You have heard about all the security breaches – from major retail chain stores to credit bureaus and more. You can’t turn on the news or read a newspaper without learning about another breach.
Because of this, I have always encouraged you to freeze your credit to lessen your changes of identity theft. Well tomorrow is a big day for consumers. Credit report freezes will become free – no more small fee to freeze your credit and another small fee to unfreeze – all this adds up. As of tomorrow, September 21, 2018 and just after the one year anniversary of the Equifax breach, there will be no cost to freeze your credit.
Please remember that you will receive a PIN with your freeze. You will need to keep this in a safe place, but not so safe that you forget where you put it to unfreeze your credit.
In addition, fraud alerts will now be available for 1 year (it was 90 days in the past).
Get out there and take advantage of the free credit freeze tomorrow!
Here is Connecticut we have been experiencing a heat wave (although the weekend was great), we have another 90+ days ahead!
So in an effort to stay cool, let’s take about credit freezes. Have you done this?
If you don’t plan on needing credit in the near future, you may want to consider this. A credit freeze is one way to help protect your identity from being stolen. You freeze your credit reports (yes, all three credit reports), so that no one can access your credit report (not even you) to open new accounts.
The reason why I say not needing your credit in the near future, is because there is a cost to freezing and unfreezing your credit report. So if you have plans to open a new credit card, finance the purchase of a car, buy or refinance a home in the near future, this could be costly.
Here is a great article from AARP walking you through the steps of a credit freeze.
In my last post, I suggested that you consider freezing your credit. Another option would be credit monitoring. I personally am not a fan of paying for a service that you can do yourself for free. This is how you do this yourself.
You can review your credit three times per year for FREE! The Credit Card Act of 2010 lets you have a free credit report from each of the three credit reporting agencies once every 365 days. I suggest that instead of you accessing your credit report once a year, that you access your credit report three separate times in a year and do this yourself.
We make that easy for you. If you subscribe to this newsletter, Money Choices (www.JillRussoFoster.com) you will receive a reminder email three times per year to access your credit report. This will not be posted on social media, you will have to subscribe to Money Choices to get this reminder. Do this today, as your next reminder is coming in a few weeks. You can then see what is happening on your credit report and catch any suspicious activity. Sign up today!
Are you one of the increasing many who rely on credit cards to live?
Since the financial crisis, we have seen consumer debt decline. That’s a good thing. But not anymore. Credit cards debt has now hit the $1 trillion mark according to the Federal Reserve. To read more, click here
For more tips, visit my website.
How many credit cards do you have that charge a fee?
Do you pay:
foreign transaction fee?
We’ll you are not alone. There are so many credit card to choose from, that you can avoid these fees by having the right credit card for this situation. We have a card that we use for foreign travel – no fee. We have a low interest card 8% with no fees for when we need to finance a purchase (that we know we won’t be able to pay off in full when the bill arrives). So it’s understanding what your needs are and what credit card meets them.
CreditCards.com released a report listing what credit cards offer what. This will help you to decide if you have the correct credit card for your needs and may help you to save money.
Do you ever wonder what your credit report and score sway about you?
It might help for you to think of your credit report and score as your GPA. What you did in college was equated to a GPA. The same is true for you finances. What you did or didn’t do with most of your finances becomes your credit score.
Do you want to improve your credit? Then you need to make changes.
What do you want to know about your credit? I am working on a new program and want your input. Tell me specifically what you would want included – what info, what steps and more. Post your comments here.
You may think you have bad credit, but you can change that by being informed. Information is the key to understanding what to do and what not to do. I truly believe that you control your own financial destiny.
To start, make a promise to be more informed – read more credible information, understand what is considered a good credit score and more. Learn this information and take steps each and every week to improve your credit score from where you are now. Make a plan!
If you credit is less than you desire, start by reading articles on my website, read this report from a survey that US New and World Report did with lots of helpful information that you may not be aware of. There is more information out there, but make sure it’s from a reputable source. Tomorrow, we’ll talk about your options.
You know that your credit is an important part of your financial life. You know that the higher your score the better the terms are when you apply for credit – lower interest rate, lower monthly payments and more. You may have wanted to improve your credit score, but it’s too confusing and you don’t know where to start.
Let me tell you that this is a journey and there is no instant magic pill. It takes hard work and dedication on your part. Where do you start? The first step is to know your credit score. You can get a close approximation of your FICO score. Yes, it’s time to face the reality and look at it. You need to know where you stand. To see your credit score, go to my resource page and see how to access your credit score for free.
The next step is to make a plan. These are the small steps you take each week to do just one thing to improve your credit score. They can range from not using a credit card to make a purchase, make sure to pay that bill on time, bringing in more money to be able to make that payment and more.
I know this is hard. Years ago I had way too much credit card debt and I couldn’t image that I would every be debt free. But there came a day when I came to the realization that I needed to deal with it. I made a plan and stuck to it and was out of debt. As a result, my credit score increased to be excellent. I know that you too can do this.
Here are some more information to help you understand what it’s costing you.
We’ll talk more about this tomorrow.